Keeping Things in Perspective 4/365

I have been giving a lot of thought to how I want to work with this project. One photograph a day for the whole year. For the past three days I had got myself into a bit of a knot, wanting each day to produce something as close to special as I could. I worried and fussed and fretted.

Last night I woke in the night and realized that if I was not very careful I was going to burn myself out pretty quickly and lose the joy that I hope to get out of this project. I remembered that I have other objectives as well over the coming months (and years). I want to grow and develop spiritually as well as creatively. I need time to do both, time which is always in short supply. I want to take up my drawing and maybe even painting again. I haven’t picked up a pencil to draw in more years than I care to admit. I used to get such pleasure out of drawing and I want to get that back, if I can. I also need to keep exercising and as fit as I can, while I can. All these things are important and need a place in my life. I need to keep things in perspective.

So I am going to make this project into a kind of a photographic journal. Yes, I hope to include some photographs that I have worked hard on, to make them just right (or as right as I can). But I am not going to fret over each and every day if the photograph for that day is not a masterpiece. I will try to produce something that tells me (and anyone else who is interested or happens to pass by) something about my day.

So I got out my pencils and my paints and some of my old drawings (and tried a new one, just for fun) and found my sketch pads. This photograph shows some of these, with a very special paint box. This paint box belonged to my mother-in-law when she was a schoolgirl and it was given to Steven when he was in school. It must be 70 years old, or getting on that way. You would hardly believe it, to look at it. I began to use it in the 1990’s, myself.

This afternoon I went for a long walk with Steven in the bright cold and deep snow (using our snowshoes of course) and came back and had muffins and tea with a friend. Friends are always important in our lives. I will hopefully sleep well and look forward to a new and exciting day tomorrow. We never know what is waiting and I am looking forward to the days and the months ahead, with great anticipation.


26 Responses

  1. So it's hoping for a stress free year (as much as possible) +Mary Wardell – and it's for me to make it that way! Thank you.

    +Mari Luukkonen – thank you very much. We do learn so much about each other from our images, don't we?

    +Heiko Mahr – you are such a kind, sensitive guy! You are right, about the balancing and the spoons. I know I will have lots of wonderful memories, as you say.

    Thanks so much for your support and hard work, +Patricia dos Santos Paton – as a theme curator I can't imagine how y9u find the time to curate a project like this, which is every day. Amazing.

    Thank you Nataly for your wishes. I will take them all if I can get them 🙂 +Nataly Rubeo 

    +Lisa Van Dyke – like you said about yourself, I have a bit of work to get back some of the rusty skills. It will be a fun journey.

    +tibby payne – I did exactly that, in the 366 year and thought about doing a book, but didn't do it (at least not yet). This year, to start, I have a private community, with only myself and my husband as members. In it I have a category where each of my daily posts will be put. That way I can keep track of them, and hope that Google will not lose any of them for me. It will be much easier to look back on them all that way. I will not be able to post every day, as I don't always have time to get to my computer. But they will be there and I hope I will not get more than a day or so behind.

    That was such a lovely thing to say, +Giselle Savoie – I know that it is not a good likeness, but for the first drawing in probably 20 years, and one that took me about 15 minutes, from life, not a photograph, I was not disappointed and am encouraged to continue. You are very sweet, Giselle.

  2. Thanks +Liz C 

    Thanks for those kind words, +Dale Atkinson I will do my best.
    +Ursula Klepper – I'm so glad you liked it. I didn't know you did drawing too! That is amazing. Okay, when we meet up (which we have to do, one day) we will arrange to draw together.  Not a crazy idea at all. 🙂 You are right. It is the spoons that dictate, but I am having plenty at the moment, so am doing what I can. This decision made me feel much better.

    Thanks +Sumit Sen – I'm glad you did.

    +Tom McGowan – thank you for your kind wishes.

    Thanks so much, +Janet Patterson – you are a great support in this.

    Great that you did that, +Bette Kauffman and that you won prizes with it! Excellent. I have my camera with me at all times as I have never managed to take a decent photograph with my phones, any of them! 

    +Annie Irving – I had a year off after my first 366 project. Sadly, my constant companion in that project died in October, my dog, Joni. The year I did it with her, she features (intentionally and unintentionally) in many of the photos and I am so glad of that now. Now I walk alone, or with Steven.
    Thank you for your good wishes.

    You are right (and so is your daughter) +Sharon Stone – but we try, don't we?

    I hope that I will be able to draw again, +Christinia Peake and would love to not be able to keep the pencil out of my hand. I thought I had lost it, but did that quick sketch (which is not a good likeness, but you can see who it is meant to be) in about 15 minutes or less. Which encouraged me. Thanks for your comment.

    Thanks +Nigel DeFoe 

  3. Good luck +Ellie Kennard that is one big project, love your image,   had a close look at your drawings, your good at it, should keep it up, I'am a fine one to talk I have'nt done much drawing or painting  last year!   Will be keeping an eye out for your shots! Have a wonderful evening!

  4. I too did a daily photographic journal called 'a year lept out of my life' as it was a leap year so 366 days…it was great fun but time consuming and you certainly need to be dedicated. I found that if I didn't write down the day, and where I was etc…I would lost commitment so every week without fail I uploaded everything on my Mac and eventually printed a book. It's a great souvenir and I don't think it matters if the photo isn't special. Good luck with yours it sounds fab!!

  5. Wonderful post +Ellie Kennard! I sat here shaking my head up and down in agreement with your written words. I have similar goals this year with my own sketching and painting. Thought I lost the skills completely over the years, but working on building them up again this year to grow. I look forward to seeing your project develop this year.

  6. That image is a masterpiece +Ellie Kennard – a masterpiece of balance your spoons 😉 (and of still life photography alike)
    A photo journal is a wonderful concept and it will provide you some wonderful memories of this year once it is finished!

  7. That is the perfect way to approach the project. I tried it a couple of years ago and never finished for just that reason – I stressed too much. I look forward to your journey through the year.  Enjoy yourself!

  8. Yeah its kind of dufficult to balance things out and make time for all the things you want to for. I draw as well. I like to for other things as well but I can't keep that pencil out my hand. I try to draw something everyday. Good luck with your journey. You will do just fine.

  9. This is my third year doing a photo-a-day project and I treat it like a photographic journal – and it really works. When I look back over the albums from the past two years, I can remember each day fom the photo, even though they may not seem special to anyone else.
    I also like the discipline. The project forces me to keep my eyes open, and makes sure I get some exercise most days – walking my camera instead of a dog!
    Good luck with yours, Ellie!

  10. The journal idea is excellent. I've never done a 365 project–precisely because I think it would be the kind of pressure I don't need right now. But I do have an ongoing series called "iPhone Diary." I started it when I discovered the iPhone as a decent tool to return to photography on a more serious scale and level. I had one rule: That I had to look carefully and frame carefully such that the photo told the story of the moment without cropping. I did sometimes adjust the contrast and color in post, but very little. The idea was/is very much like a journal–a moment in a life made visible to others. Sometimes the moments are completely mundane, other times quite important. And I actually won ribbons in local arts shows with several of them! So… however you do yours, have fun with it!

  11. This is such a wonderful post Ellie! And I really have the feeling to know you a little bit more through it. I am amazed that you do also drawing and painting! You know, I do so myself, or shall I say did, because didn't do for so long time! And i just had the imagination about us sitting side ab side and drawing …. Crazy! :o)
     .. I guess you know best how to divide out your spoons every day!

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